Keeping Students on the Right Track

Ben Castleman

For his work on the issue of “summer melt,” Ben Castleman—an assistant professor in the Curry School’s Education Policy program—was named one of the Sixteen Most Innovative People in Higher Ed by Washington Monthly.

Summer melt is the phenomenon in which high school students say they are planning on going to college but fail to follow through during the summer after their senior years.

Working with Michelle Obama’s “Better Make Room” campaign, Castleman designed a series of text-message-based reminders to send to students.

Robert Vaughan

VFH Head to Step Down

After 43 years at the helm of the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, Robert Vaughan will retire in 2017.

Vaughan is the founding president of the VFH, as well as the founding director of the South Atlantic Humanities Center. He taught at UVA for 35 years in the College of Arts and Sciences and in the Darden School.

Bicentennial Commission

During an October ceremony, Dr. Robert W. Battle and Thomas Farrell were introduced as co-chairs of the University’s bicentennial celebration commission.

Farrell (Col ’76, Law ’79), who served for eight years on Virginia’s Board of Visitors—including two years as rector—is the president and CEO of Dominion Resources, Inc., while Battle (Med ’84) is a professor of medicine and pediatrics in the UVA School of Medicine.

Dr. Robert W. Battle and Thomas Farrell

The 48-member commission includes former University of Richmond president Edward Ayers; former Virginia Gov. Gerald Baliles (Law ’67); former UVA football player Tiki Barber (Com ’97); James River Corporation founder Brenton Halsey (Engr ’51); journalist and political commentator Alexander “Brit” Hume (Col ’65); civil rights attorney and activist Elaine R. Jones (Law ’70); Major League Baseball CIO Jonathan Mariner (Com ’76); Tranlin CEO Jerry Zhiyuan Peng (Darden ’03); venture capitalist Sonja Hoel Perkins (Com ’88); Dr. Vivian Pinn (Med ’67); former BOV rector and president of the UVA Alumni Association Gordon Rainey Jr. (Col ’62, Law ’67); The Pew Charitable Trusts CEO Rebecca Rimel (Nurs ’73); philanthropist Hunter Smith; and former Virginia Supreme Court justice John Thomas (Col ’72, Law ’75).

Each commission member is assigned to one of four executive advisory groups: engagement and promotion, commemoration of history, envisioning the future, and liaison to the campaign. The commission will prepare a report for the BOV proposing the direction and mission of the University.

UVA’s 200th anniversary celebration begins next year and concludes in 2019.

Professor Honored for Dedication to Students

Nancy Deutsch

Nancy Deutsch, an associate professor in the Curry School, was the recipient of the 2016 Student Council’s Distinguished Teaching Award.

The award is presented annually to a teacher who makes a positive and lasting impact on the University through dedication to developing relationships with students and the creation of an engaging and challenging classroom atmosphere.

Deutsch works with both the Educational Psychology-Applied Developmental Science program and the Research, Statistics & Evaluation program. She plays a central role in the Youth-Nex research center and UVA’s Young Women Leaders Program.